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How To Clean Yellowed Rubber On Shoe Soles

Are you looking for tips on how to clean yellowed rubber on your shoe soles? If so, you’re at the right place. Over time, rubber, no matter whether your shoes’ sole, can start to turn yellow and become discolored, making it less appealing to look at.

Fortunately, you can take a few steps to clean yellowing rubber and restore it to its original color.

To clean yellowed rubber, all you need is to make a paste of a mixture of dish soap and baking soda with a bit of water. Rub the paste onto the rubber, rinse with warm water and dry with a soft cloth.

In this guide, we will discuss in-depth how to properly clean your yellowing rubber to make it look as good as new. So, keep reading to learn more.

Why Do Shoe Rubber Soles Become Yellowed?

Why Rubber Become Yellowing?

The rubber soles of your shoe become yellowed due to exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light, ozone, and other environmental factors. Here are some reasons rubber can change color and become discolored:

  1. Ultraviolet (UV) Light: Rubber can become yellow when exposed to UV light, as the energy from the radiation can cause the rubber to break down and become discolored. This can occur when the rubber-made instrument, like phone covers, is left outside for extended periods or when it is used in applications exposed to UV light.

    In that case, cleaning the phone case that turned yellow help you to make the cover white again.

  2. Ozone: Ozone is a naturally occurring gas in the atmosphere and can cause the shoess’ materials to turn yellow when it comes into contact with the material. It is particularly damaging to rubber that is exposed to the open air and can cause the material to degrade over time.
  3. Heat: Rubber can also become yellow when exposed to high temperatures. The heat can cause the rubber to break down and become discolored. This is especially true for rubber that is used in applications that require exposure to high temperatures.
  4. Age: As rubber ages, it can become yellow due to a material breakdown. This especially happens when the rubber is exposed to UV light and ozone over extended periods of time.
  5. Chemical Exposure: Rubber can also become yellow if it is exposed to certain chemicals. These chemicals can interact with the rubber and cause it to break down and become discolored.

How To Clean Yellowed Rubber Sole

How to Clean Yellowing Rubber?

Here are simple steps you can follow to clean your yellowed rubber and make your shoe soles look new again:

Step 1: Identifying the Problem

Various factors, including exposure to sunlight, heat, oxygen, and other environmental elements, can cause yellowing rubber. Besides, it can also be caused by the presence of certain chemicals, such as sulfur and chlorine.

Step 2: Preparing the Area

Before beginning the cleaning process, ensure the area is well-ventilated, and the rubber is free of dust and debris. If the rubber is dirty, wipe the area with a damp cloth before proceeding.

Step 3: Choosing the Right Cleaning Product

Various products are available for cleaning yellowing rubber, including commercial cleaners and natural solutions. When choosing a product, consider the particular type of rubber that needs to be cleaned and the severity of the yellowing.

Step 4: Applying the Cleaning Product

Once the proper cleaning product has been chosen, it should be applied according to the instructions on the label. If using a commercial cleaner, you should wear protective gear such as gloves and a face mask.

Step 5: Finishing Touches

After the cleaning product has been allowed to sit for the recommended amount of time, the rubber should be rinsed off with warm water and dried with a soft cloth. If the yellowing persists, additional applications of the cleaning product may be necessary.

How To Maintain the Rubber Sole

The best offense is a good defense for keeping rubber from yellowing. Proper rubber storage is key to preventing yellowing or slowing down aging.

Store the Rubber Sole Properly

Rubber needs to be stored in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. In addition, it should not be exposed to extreme temperatures, as this can cause the rubber to become brittle and break down over time.

Consider storing the rubber sole in an airtight container or bag to help keep out moisture and other contaminants.

Avoid Exposure to Heat and Sunlight

Heat and sunlight can cause the rubber to become yellowed and brittle. To keep the rubber in its best condition, kept away from direct sunlight and heat sources. If the rubber is in an area where it is regularly exposed to sunlight, consider using an opaque cover to block out the light.

Additionally, try to keep the rubber away from any sources of heat, such as radiators or hot pipes.

How Do I Get the Yellow off My Rubber Soles?

If you’re like most people, you probably don’t give much thought to the soles of your shoes. But if you’ve noticed that the rubber on your soles has turned yellow, you may wonder how to get rid of it.

There are a few different reasons why rubber soles can turn yellow. One is simply due to exposure to sunlight and heat over time. This can happen even if you take good care of your shoes and don’t wear them often.

How Do I Get the Yellow off My Rubber Soles?

Another reason is because of certain chemicals in the environment, such as sulfur dioxide from car exhaust or chlorine from swimming pools.

These chemicals can react with the rubber and cause it to discolor. Fortunately, you can do a few things to get rid of yellowing on your rubber soles.

One option is to use a product specifically designed for cleaning shoe soles. You can find these at most shoe stores or online retailers.

Another option is to mix together a solution of water and vinegar (about 1 part vinegar to 4 parts water) and scrub the affected areas with this mixture using an old toothbrush or similar brush. If neither of these options works, you may need to replace the affected sole entirely.

How To Clean Yellow Soles With Household Items

If your white shoes have started to develop yellow soles, don’t despair. A few easy household tricks can help get them looking clean and new again. One simple way to clean yellow soles is with vinegar.

Dilute some vinegar with water and use a cloth or brush to scrub the affected areas. You can also try using lemon juice in the same way.

Another option is to make a paste out of baking soda and water, which can also scrub stubborn dirt and stains.

If your shoes are particularly dirty, you may need to give them a good soak in warm soapy water before cleaning them with one of these methods.

Whichever method you choose, be sure to rinse the shoes well afterward and allow them to dry completely before wearing them.


If you’ve noticed that your rubber sole looks yellow and dull, don’t worry; it’s an easy problem to fix. Hopefully, you may gather an overall idea of how to clean yellowed rubber.

Following the steps discussed above, you can easily convert your yellow rubber into white. However, no matter whether your rubber shoes or other rubber material become yellow, following the same process, you can make the product white.

Even it is also possible to make your yellowing rubber white using household items, as shown in the section above.